Articles in Newsweek and The Washington Post mischaracterized a remark by former President Bill Clinton, claiming that he appeared to dismiss Sen. Barack Obama's campaign as "the biggest fairy tale I've ever seen." In fact, Clinton was referring to Obama's statements about his position on the Iraq war; he was not talking about the Obama campaign as the "biggest fairy tale." Further, the Newsweek article, as well as a New York Times article and a Washington Post op-ed, all truncated a comment by Hillary Clinton on the passage of civil rights legislation in the 1960s, omitting a portion of her remarks in which she referred to President John F. Kennedy.
On Hardball, Chris Matthews asked Bill Richardson: "What do you make of Hillary Clinton's performance on Saturday night right before the New Hampshire primary, this past Saturday night? There's been a lot of talk about this, the role that we in the media, that I personally played. There's a whole kind of -- all kind of discussion about the boys perhaps tackling the one woman candidate."
During the early evening of January 8, the day of the New Hampshire primaries, Bill Bennett said on CNN: "The Clintons come in like George McGovern and go out like Richard Nixon. I think they're going out, by the way." Later, Bennett also stated: "Count Hillary Clinton out of this." But after CNN called the primary for Clinton that night, Bennett commented, "You know, watching the mainstream media saying that she was done and finished -- for a conservative Republican, where do I go? Do I side with the Clintons or do I side with the mainstream media?" At no point did Bennett mention his earlier comments.
During an appearance on MSNBC's Morning Joe, NBC News' David Shuster mocked co-host Joy Behar of ABC's The View for her criticism of MSNBC host Chris Matthews' recent comments about Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, in which Matthews attributed Clinton's political success to her husband's "mess[ing] around." Shuster stated, "Yeah, you know, Joy Behar is well known for her political analysis" and then rolled his eyes, before purporting to "impersonat[e]" Behar.
On Hannity & Colmes, Sean Hannity asked Louis Freeh, Rudy Giuliani's "Senior Homeland Security Advisor" and Delaware campaign chair: "Do you see any strength on national security in the Democrats?" Freeh replied, "No, I don't see any strength on that side." Additionally, as in previous interviews with Giuliani himself, Hannity did not disclose that he has reportedly raised money for Giuliani.
On his CNN Headline News show, Glenn Beck said of John Edwards: "I listened to him last night give a speech, and, I mean, why not just start wearing the Soviet star on your head and the Workers World Party?" Beck added: "Good Lord in heaven. Was it a mistake for him to go after her [Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton] for crying and then also to join this great Soviet state?"
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Bill O'Reilly stated that "some NBC commentators continue to slam Senator Clinton" and aired a video clip of MSNBC anchor Chris Matthews' comment about Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton: "[T]he reason she's a U.S. senator, the reason she's a candidate for president, the reason she may be a front-runner is her husband messed around." O'Reilly called Matthews' comment "rough" and said: "We don't do that here. We would never say that Senator Clinton got her job because her husband messed around. I mean, that is -- that is a personal attack. And it is questionable whether a network should allow that or not."
A USA Today editorial stated that Rudy Giuliani "finished dismally in New Hampshire, but his ignore-the-little-states strategy could pay off with a Jan. 29 win in Florida." On Fox & Friends, Michael Reagan asserted that Giuliani is "sitting down in Florida. By the time they [the primaries] get to Florida, they may not even remember who Rudy Giuliani is." And on The Journal Editorial Report, Daniel Henninger said of Giuliani, "He's skipping New Hampshire." In fact, on the January 8 edition of Today, Giuliani himself said, "We've actually spent the most time in New Hampshire and then Florida is right behind that."
In discussions and reports on the New Hampshire primaries, numerous media outlets and personalities praised Sen. John McCain as authentic, real, exhibiting "flinty independence," and a "maverick," and described him as "Mr. Straight Talk."
During MSNBC's coverage of the New Hampshire Primary, Hardball host Chris Matthews said of Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's performance during a January 5 Democratic presidential candidates debate: "I wasn't clear at all that she won it. But maybe she was good enough to seem good enough here for women who wanted to root for her anyway." He further stated that the 2008 presidential election is "a pioneer opportunity for women voting -- especially older women voting, who may figure this is their last chance to elect a woman president."
Previewing the January 5 presidential debates, MSNBC's Chris Matthews discussed what he said would be "a good question" to ask candidates, such as one that would force the candidates to "choose between Latino voters who want more of an open border and the other voters ... who definitely don't want that kind of an open border." Yet, while Matthews did not offer any examples of "Latino voters who want more of an open border," in fact, a number of national and regional Latino groups have specifically rejected the idea of "open borders" while advocating for comprehensive immigration reform, as have members of Congress representing states and districts with large Latino constituencies.
On Countdown, Keith Olbermann named Bill O'Reilly the "winner" of his nightly "Worst Person in the World" segment for saying that John Edwards "has no clue" regarding Edwards' statement that "tonight, 200,000 men and women who wore our uniform proudly and served this country courageously as veterans will go to sleep under bridges and on grates."
The New York Times and the Politico's Ben Smith misreported Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's emotional remarks during a campaign event in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. The Times reported that Clinton said, in part, "I have so many ideas for this country, I just don't want to see us fall backwards," while Smith reported that Clinton said: "I have so many opportunities for this country. I don't want to see us all fall back" [emphases added]. In fact, Clinton said, "You know, I have so many opportunities from this country" [emphasis added].
During the ABC News-Facebook debate, co-moderator Scott Spradling invited the Republican presidential candidates to openly criticize a Democratic candidate, asking them, "[W]hy not vote for [Sen.] Barack Obama" if he were the Democratic presidential nominee. However, neither he nor ABC News' Charlie Gibson offered a similar opportunity to the Democratic candidates.
During ABC News' coverage of the ABC News-Facebook debates, correspondent Bianna Golodryga asserted that the fact that 66 percent of respondents answered yes when asked, "Could a Democratic president keep America safe?" "surprised us." But she did not say why those results were "surpris[ing]." Other media figures have previously asserted that Republicans have an advantage on issues of national security and terrorism, despite polls showing Democrats either tied or at a slight advantage against Republicans on that issue.